Welding Schools in California

Welders are skilled individuals who are required in various industries including construction, steel, automobiles manufacturing, shipbuilding and furniture, etc. Many items of daily use as well as large structures are created by skilled welders which makes them a vital asset for most employers.
All in all, welders are well-paid professionals who help many organizations accomplish important goals. It is a good field for people who do not like working at a desk all day and would rather move around while performing their job duties. If you are such an individual, then a career in welding can be a good choice. This guide will give you all the important information you need about making it as a welder in California.

Job Duties of a Welder

Welders work primarily with various kinds of metals such as brass, copper, steel, stainless steel, silver and aluminum, etc. to create different items. Below are some of the main job responsibilities of a welder:

  • Using different welding equipment for the creation, repair, renovation and maintenance of different metal items/structures
  • Operating welding machines, cutters, pliers, shapers, lighting flame and other welding equipment to join metals together for the manufacturing of new stuff
  • Care and maintenance of all welding tools and equipment through regular servicing and cleaning
  • Going through sketches, schematics, blueprints and other technical plans and illustrations to make reasonable estimates about the raw materials and work equipment that any project needs

Requirements to Enter a Welding School in California

You need a high school diploma or a GED (General Educational Development) certificate to enroll in a welding school in California. Some institutions may grant entry to you if you have passed 10th grade. However, you will then have to finish high school and earn your diploma alongside your specialized welding education.

Steps to Enter a Welding School in California

  1. Finish high school

This is the minimum eligibility criteria that you need to fulfill in order to enter a welding school.

  1. Enroll into a welding education program of your choice

There are a number of welding schools in California offering different welding education programs. The main ones are certificate and associate’s degree programs which normally last for around 6 months to 2 years. Some institutions may also offer 4-year bachelor’s degree programs in Welding Engineering and related sectors.
There are over 50 different institutions providing welding education and training throughout California. These are the major ones:

Southern California

  • John Lopez Welding School, Bakersfield
  • Welding Skills Test and Training Center, Rancho Cucamonga
  • Fullerton College, Fullerton
  • Columbia College, Columbia College Drive Sonora

Northern California

  • Cal-Trade Welding School, Modesto
  • Cal Weld, Freemont
  • GK Welding School
  • Allied Welding School
  • Sierra College

California Welding Certifications

Different states may have varying requirements for a welding certification. With regards to California, the relevant body is the Contractors State License Board (CSLB). It provides the Welding Contractor certification to individuals who undergo its assessment. Other than that, the American Welding Society (AWS) is a nationwide body that confers different certifications among qualified welders.

How Much Do Welders Make in California?

Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers in California made $46,560 in annual mean wage as of May 2018 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The hourly mean wage at the same time was $22.39.

Job Growth and Career Outlook for Welders in California

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics expects jobs for welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers to increase nationally by 6% between 2016 and 2026. So, the career outlook is quite encouraging for welders both in California and around the country.